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Treasuring Life, II

>> 10.28.2011

In her book, Feminine Appeal, Carolyn Mahaney shares the following as she talks about the struggles of keeping a right attitude in motherhood.

"Because mothering requires constant sacrifice, the temptations to resentment, complaining, and self-pity are always close at hand.  But such selfishness will quickly sap the strength of our love for our children...As mothers, we have a choice. We can either resent the challenges and demands that accompany motherhood and persist in our selfishness, or we can draw from God's grace and receive his help to cheerfully lay down our lives for our children..." (p52,53)

There is no question about it, and anyone who's ever done it will agree, mothering is the hardest job there is to do.  If we let all of the demands that come with the job overcome us and if we try to tackle them all in our own strength, we WILL be unhappy and we WILL resent our children.  If, however, we look to the cross, and see (and learn from!) the example Christ gave us of serving day in and day out with abounding love for even complete strangers, we'll find the strength we need to get us through each difficult day and season of mothering.  I find I am most satisfied in life (and in those given to me) when I allow the calling of motherhood to take its rightful place of center-stage (in priority over other life responsibilities-- after God and husband, of course) instead of resenting it compared to whatever "else" I could be doing at the moment.  For me, discontentment in motherhood and in this stage of life, appears when I allow myself to dwell on "other possibilities." 

I've always been a dreamer -- somewhere in my the depths of my heart I've wanted to do something so big for God that it is as if it were impossible to do.  I recently heard a broadcast (don't ask me which one!) where a quote was made about God working in impossibilities; something to the effect that Christ-followers should live everyday doing the impossible because as Believers we should be living fully dependant upon Him -- and doing impossible tasks require relying on the God of impossibility.  I sighed at this thought and revisited the "oh, I wish I were doing something impossible for God" thought-- and then it hit me (I'm pretty sure it was the Holy Spirit that hit me, but ya know, not in a harmful way, lol) -- as a mother, I AM doing an impossible thing for Him!!!!  Raising children who will love the Lord and follow Him and lead their families someday to do the same IS an impossible task!!!  And, to do so successfully, can ONLY be done WITH the Lord!! Only HE will draw my children to Himself and only HE can give me the strength to keep going on the many days when I want to give up or "do something else." 

If you are in this with me, and feel the same way, let me encourage you; you, as a mother dedicated to her children, are attempting the impossible -- and we know that WITH GOD, ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE.  Keep on leaning on Him.

"Attempt something so impossible that unless God is in it, it's doomed to failure."  ~ John Haggai


On Behalf of Desperation

Recently, one of my good friends had a baby increasing her "quiver" from one to two.  I remember this transition in my own life very well and remember how every minute seemed to drain my body by the physical demands made on me to provide for the constant needs of an 18-month-old and a newborn.  Sleep eludes its normal cycle and you are forever (it seems) sleep deprived and running on empty. 

I saw a Facebook post of this friend that described her 18 month old playing in flour on the floor while around her was strewn a dirty diaper (maybe two!- GASP!=), laundry baskets full of undone clothing, dirty dishes in the sink...on it went.  And my heart went out.  Oh, those memories!  I wanted to reach through the computer screen to just hug her and let her rest a minute.  (If I were at her house, I'd have done the dishes and laundry and then made supper!!!)  No words of "oh, it will get better" or the awful response that I sometimes got, "Oh, these are the good days, honey!"  or the often heard "enjoy it while they are young.  It'll pass so quickly!"  Really?!?  Those are the responses that hit like bricks and are as welcomed as words of "comfort" so often offered after the loss of a loved one.  As we get further along in our parenting journey we do see that the days pass quickly, but while one is in the middle of it, those words only make you feel guilty for being as tired and overwhelmed as you are.  They are of no comfort.

My challenge and request as a mom just a few years more into this is to women who have older children and are a little more independant-- give some time to a young mom!  Show up unannounced and do not take "no" for an answer to your offer to help.  Clean those dishes, prepare a meal, rock a crying baby, and let mom get some much needed rest!  I believe this was one of those things women in the days of old used to do for younger moms as they sought to obey the Titus 2 command to "train younger women to love their husbands and their children..." (Titus 2:4)  How can a woman continue to pour out and out and out without the proper rest her own body and soul needs?  We all know it is almost impossible to give the right responses to those we love when we are "out of steam".  So give the gift of rest to someone you know today.  (And then come back and let us know if you did!)  You will be blessed.  The momma will be blessed.  And all her family will be blessed as well. 



And the Winner Is...!

>> 10.24.2011

The winner of the Education Cubes giveaway courtesy of Mama Jenn is...

Angela, from Mama's Two Cents Worth!!!!

Congrats, Angela!  Please send your email addy to me via mom2iek@gmail.com and I will get your info. over to Mama Jenn so she can add you to the membership list and you can start enjoying your Education Cube printables right away! 

Thanks to all who have participated. I'd still encourage you to add Education Cubes and the Photo Stacking Blocks to your "resources-to - buy" list for school or maybe even your Christmas list.  This past week we reviewed our Spanish greeting phrases with them and studied our sight words from Child 1st Publishing with them.  (I'd have pics, but part of my busyness was having my camera "tied up" a bit with my photog business.  Next time, right?!)

Still working on the next giveaway!  I have the product here and I'm SUPER excited to share it will you BUT I've got to get a few more details in place before I do so...hopefully by THIS WEEK'S END!!!


Treasuring Life

>> 10.20.2011

These past few weeks have been a blur -- the moments have only been interrupted by changing yet another load of sheets or towels or clothes that show the wear of my sick family members.  I think I've left the house maybe 2 or 3 times in the last 14 + days?  Usually, my response to this would be unmentionable, but this time around, as I've prayed for a better heart attitude, I'm finding peace amidst the mess and strain of caring for others and I've come to the point where day upon day I can see that God is answering my prayers and I've actually enjoyed every moment with my children and husband.  I know this should be characterizing my entire life, but let's face it-- sometimes those you live with drive you the most crazy and inside, out of pure selfishness, your heart can begin to cry "Get Me Outta Here!"  The last thing you want is one more person touching, clinging, calling, blah, blah, blah-- all for you.

In a small group I'm able to attend during our homeschool co-op mornings, we've been reading through Carolyn Mahaney's book, Feminine Appeal.  It's been out for a few years now and had been on my "to read someday" book list so I was thrilled to find out that we were going to read through it together and study Titus 2.  I've studied this passage many times before, and each time I have blessed by the awesome reminder of my responsibilities -- and PRIVILEGES -- God has granted me through motherhood.  If you would, take a moment to read through the passage and if I'm allowed another post anytime soon, I'll comment there.  (Verses 3-5 are the emphasis of the book.)

1 You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine. 2 Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self-controlled, and sound in faith, in love and in endurance.
3 Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. 4 Then they can train the younger women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God. (taken from here)



HOD Spelling

>> 10.10.2011

Since I decided to go ahead and make these up each week for our spelling, I thought I'd make it easier and just create one page that included the links.  I hope this helps any of you out there that may use Heart of Dakota for your curriculum -- specifically the Beyond that we are using and to which these lists coordinate.  (I will add on going back and forward as I have time. This is what I have for now=)

Unit 8, short words ending in 'y' (i.e. try, shy, etc.)
Unit 9, long 'a' words (with silent 'e')
Unit 10, long 'i' words (with silent 'e') List One      List Two

Happy Word Tiling!

Kristen J.



Just wanted to give a warm welcome to my new followers and subscribers.  I appreciate your interest & am looking forward to drawing a winner just two weeks from today!  I had great plans of posting each day this week one way we use Education Cubes in our home -- but alas, the flu has decided to run amok here and I'm not sure what my week will entail!  (I know you all completely understand=)  So, as I am able, I will be posting some pics and hopefully spark your interest and enthusiasm even more for this product.

Also-- be on the lookout for a great Christmas idea coming very soon through this MSW blog.  It will be educational (for the adults in your life), God-honoring, and look really nice around your home...any guesses?  (I don't think you could even guess if you tried!)  More details will come by weeks' end (along with another giveaway!)

Until then,
Kristen J.


This House Speaks

>> 10.01.2011

What a disaster this previous month seems to have been!  Everywhere I looked these past few weeks there were visual reminders of what I felt was going on in my heart-- cluttered table-tops, laundry baskets full of dirty (and clean-- but unfolded!) clothes, paper and book piles in just about every corner...whew!  You know the verse that states, "...Out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks?"(Luke 6:45)  Well, I think maybe the verse could also be stated, "out of the overflow of the heart, the house speaks."

We've all been here before, discouragement sets in and we don't pay attention to the whisperings of His Spirit and so we go on about our days doing this and doing that and we keep wondering why we feel so...so...disconnected and overwhelmed.  Sometimes we "get it" early on and change our ways, sometimes we don't.  Well, after a month of serious disconnectedness (which = overwhelmed-ness, which = discontented-ness, which = self-pity, which = self-centeredness...you can see how this goes!), I've come back to my understanding that I seem to grasp for oh too short a time and I finally sat down with the Lord this morning.  One of my favorite ways to redirect my focus is to sing praises to Jesus while playing the piano.  Some times I use the Scriptures to direct my words and some times I use other people's words & music.  Last night, in my attempt to straighten some of the piles in my corners, I found a folder of Keith & Kristin Getty's music.  These people are truly led by the Spirit when they write music and I often will play their music to comfort my wandr'ing soul so this morning, this is the music I sang and played.  I trust God received it as a humble offering from a child of His who was seeking His forgiveness for forgetting how good He truly is to me (to ALL of us!) and I know the praise for Who He is will be honored.

Here are a couple of those songs for you to enjoy.

Lord, my You be the center of all we think, do, and say and may our lives not revile You, but may they been seen as tesimonies of Your daily, abundant, and sufficient grace.

Momma's Misson of the Month for September:  I failed in all accounts! (That's what I get for thinking I was doing so well!!!!)

Mission NOT Accomplished YET

October's Mission: To love the Lord through spending time with Him in the Word and allowing His presence to be my focus throughout the daily tasks I have at hand.


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